Thursday, September 30, 2010



A flashing red light on a clock wakes Jake up. He turns on a dim light. We see he sleeps on a small cot in a tiny, tiny room. He is blear-eyed and stands up, pulls on a shirt.

Next, he is in the workshop. He uncovers the head of the bot who saved him last night. Her name is NATALIE. He runs his hand through her hair. Her eyes open. Jake is startled.

Jake: How do you do that?

Natalie: Do what?

Jake: I shut you down last night.

Natalie: I’m just waking up.

Jake: But how do you do that?

Natalie: I don’t know.

Jake: Don’t let Fat Man find out.

Jake walks to the workbench and pulls out a small case. He walks back to Natalie and puts the case down on the table. She closes her eyes. He goes about patching her skin with small patches from the case. Natalie opens one eye.

Natalie: Did Fat Man do that to you?

Jake: Do what?

Natalie: He did it again?

Jake: Hold still.

Natalie: Jake, I can go out there take care of him.

Jake: And have the inspectors take you away and take you apart and me just go work in another sexbot shop? And not have you to talk to ever again?

Natalie’s face softens. Jake continues working.

Natalie: I love you, Jake.

Jake stops. His eyes widen. Natalie’s face is warm and sincere. Jake is silent. Natalie holds his gaze. Jake then hangs his head.

Jake: How come I have the only self-aware bot in the world?

Natalie stares at him.

Jake: You don’t think there aren’t thousands of other kids out there who could use a robot to take care of them? I’m just another dumb kid.

Natalie continues staring, then hugs him.

Jake: Thanks, but as you should know, there’s no way out of this place.

Natalie: There’s the front door.

Jake: And where would I go?

Natalie: You could go find the Inspector at Central. He’ll give you a job.

Jake: You were awake for that?

Natalie smiles.

Jake: Gotta keep my mouth shut when you’re around. And you know I’m not old enough yet. He’d just have to return me to Fat Man.

Natalie: An opportunity will present itself. You should always be on the look out.

Jake says nothing. Natalie sits up, Her face is repaired. She holds her sheet to cover herself.

Natalie: I remembered.

Jake: If you’re going to be self-aware, you’ve got to be aware of your nakedness.

Natalie: That’s one thing I still don’t understand.

Jake: How’s the rest of you?

Natalie: Fine. I fixed myself last night.

Jake: How?

Natalie: I remembered from watching you last time.

Jake: You’re learning complex procedures now?

Natalie: I guess so.

Jake’s body noticeably loosens. His head drops and he looks up at Natalie.

Jake: How’d you know to do what you did last night?

Natalie: You were in trouble.

Jake: You better learn to lay low. Fat Man’s going to catch on if you keep waking up and learning.

Natalie: I’ll lay low. You look for a way to get us out of here.

Jake: It’s us now?

Natalie: I’ve got to keep taking care of you, you know.
Natalie gives him a caring look. Jake walks to the work bench.

Jake: Are you OK?

Natalie: What do you mean?

Jake: Like, with the clients.

Natalie: I don’t feel any pain.

Natalie’s face has fallen. Jake is looking at her intently.

Jake: Don’t lie.

Natalie looks at Jake.

Natalie: I’ll be OK.

The door to the work room begins to rattle. Natalie lays back down, covering her face with the sheet. Jake turns to the work bench, busying himself. Fat Man walks in. He has just woken up, but is dressed.

Fat man: I heard talking.

Jake: Talking to myself.

Fat man: I catch you talking to one of the bots again-

Jake: I haven’t been. Promise.

Fat man: Get Natalie ready. She’s got an early appointment today.

Jake: Sure.

Voice from the lobby: Where the hell is everybody?

Fat man (startled, to Jake): He’s here!

Jake: Is that the-

Before Fat Man can leave the work room, a disgusting, round, greasy man enters the room. He wears a grin. He is JOHN.

John: What’s it take to get some service?

Fat Man: We’re just getting going for the day. She’ll be down in just a moment.

John: She better. I got some new things planned for you, dolly.

John laughs and exits.

Jake: Wasn’t he here yesterday with Natalie?

Fat man: Get her ready.

Jake: That’s the guy that cut her?

Fat man: Now.

Fat man exits to lobby. Natalie sits up.

Natalie: Get me my clothes.

Jake: But-

Natalie (more forcefully): Get me my clothes.

Jake’s face is tense as he searches for words, but he gives up and gets Natalie her clothes. He turns her back as she dresses. Natalie looks over her shoulder at Jake. Jake stares at the floor, gritting his teeth. Natalie exits the work room.

Fat man (heard through the door): Room four, sweetheart.

Jake’s face goes blank and he looks up. He peeks out of the work room. Fat Man stands behind his reception counter, counting money. Jake gets the “tazer device” from the work bench and turns on one of the girls.

Jake: Fat Man said he wants you to seduce him.

Girl (flirtatiously): Ooh, what does he want me to wear?

Jake: Um. That sheet.

Girl: Yay!

Girl gets up and exits the work room. Jake follows her to the door and watches her.

Girl: Hey.

Fat Man: Geez, Amber, what’re you doing out here?

Girl: Nothing.

Fat Man: You gotta go back and get your beauty rest. You’ve got an appointment soon. Jake!

Girl: I think I have an appointment right now.

Girl steps closer to Fat Man, touching his shoulder.

Fat Man: Jake! Get out here and get Amber in the back!

Girl: Aw, I don’t want Jake. I want you.

Fat Man: Jake!

Girl: Come on, baby.

Fat man grabs Girl by the arm and pulls her toward the back room.

Fat Man: Jake! You’re gonna get it!

Just inside the work room, Jake presses himself against the wall next to the door. Fat Man barges in with Girl. Jake slips out. He goes to the front desk and removes the revolver from the drawer. From down the hall, we hear John’s maniacal laughter.

Fat man (from work room): Jake! Where the hell are you?

Jake runs down the hall and shoots the door handle, and kicks the door in. John turns with rage.

John: Kid, you better put that down!

Jake and Natalie lock eyes. Natalie is worried. Jake is nervous, but keeps a strong face.

Jake: Let her go

Fat man is no longer in the work room and he spots Jake at the far end of the hall.

Fat man: Jake!

John: She’s just a bot, kid, not your mommy. Now get out!

Fat man moves down the hall toward Jake and Jake notices. He swings the gun and points it at Fat man. John uses that moment to make a move toward Jake and Natalie jumps from the bed, sheet wrapped around her dramatically. She lands a kick on John’s back. He lands face down, but rolls over and springs at Natalie. She shrieks in surprise. Jake, who still has the gun trained on Fat man turns to John. He fires twice, hitting John in the back. John slumps down. He turns and sees Fat man barreling down the hallway at him and with cold efficiency, fires two more rounds at Fat man, landing in his chest. Natalie lays on the floor, visibly frightened. Jake points the gun at her and fires one round in her head and one in her chest. He wraps her in the sheet and drags her to the workroom. He is sweating, fighting tears. Just as he enters the work room, another male customer walks in.

Customer: Hello?

Customer looks around. Jake remains still in the work room. He looks at Natalie’s lifeless body.

Customer (from down the hall): Oh my god!

Customer turns and runs out of the shop. Jake heads to the far corner of the work room and grabs a large, rectangular box with wheels. He rolls it over to Natalie’s lifeless body. He opens it. The box has a body outline and Jake begins to struggle to put Natalie in. He places the gun in his hand next to her. Finally, he has her in place and closes the latches. He wheels her to the back of the work room. He slides the wall back, revealing that the wall is a hidden panel. In this room are a few automatic weapons, a couple briefcases, and a few computers. Jake kicks the box in to the room and steps out. As he slides the panel back, he hears the front door open.

Cop: Police! Hands up!

Jake pushes the panel into place just as a policeman kicks open the back room door. Jake raises his hands.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Scene 1


A poorly-lit room containing 3 medical examination tables. Each table has a body that is covered with a sheet. A boy, 15 years old, stands at a work bench in the back of the room. It is covered with electronic gadgets and tools. His dark hair is shaggy, unkempt. He looks like he hasn’t slept in a few days. He wears ill-fitting clothes covered in dirt and grease. He is JAKE. Behind Jake, a door opens. A heavy set man wheels in a gurney with a woman on it. He is FAT MAN. The body on the gurney lays face down.

Fat man: Jake! Hurry up! This one’s got an appointment in an hour and the inspector’s gonna be here soon.

Jake looks over. He walks to the body and turns it over. The woman’s eyes are closed, her skin is bruised. A small trace of blood comes from her lips. The boy grits his teeth and covers her with a sheet.

The door opens again. Fat man appears.

Fat man: Here you are, Inspector.

A slim man wearing thin, dark rimmed glasses steps through the door frame.

Fat man: Anything you need to know, Jake’s your man.

The inspector looks at Jake.

Inspector: He looks a little young to be working here. Let me see your card, kid.

Fat man says nothing, but glares at Jake when the Inspector’s back is turned. Jake gives the inspector his card. The inspector bends the card in half and an array of information on a holographic display pops up.

Inspector: When’s your birthday?

Jake: July 22.

Inspector: What year?

Jake: 2124

Inspector: Where were you born?

Jake: Here.

Inspector: What town?

Jake: This town.

The inspector hands Jake his ID back and removes a small wand from his bag.

Fat man: I’ll be tending my shop if you need me, inspector.

Fat man leaves, grinning.

Inspector removes the sheet from one of the bodies. Jake looks away. The inspector, showing no emotion, waves the wand over the body.

Inspector (to Jake): You’re the mechanic here?

Jake: Yeah.

Inspector waves the glowing wand over another of the bodies.

Inspector: You do good work. These bots are all above standard.

Jake: Thanks.

Inspector (without looking at Jake): Take some pride in your work.

Jake doesn’t respond. The inspector comes to the final body, the one that Jake just covered up. The inspector pulls back the sheet and recoils.

Inspector: Ugh. Those damned monsters. (he looks up at Jake) How do you handle this, kid?

Jake (shrugs): Gotta fix’em.

Inspector: You got more stones than me, kid. Make sure you report this to Central. Gotta keep an eye on potential perverts. I mean, criminals. Being a pervert is still legal.

Inspector pauses. He places the sheet back over the battered bot.

Inspector: If you ask me, these fleshbots are doing more harm than good. We haven’t seen it yet, but mark my words, violent crime is gonna go up. Unprecedented access to a sexual partner you don’t have to hold back your inhibitions? Can’t be good for any society... Gotta have rules.

The inspector clicks the end of the wand and the glowing light goes off.

Inspector: But, I don’t make the laws and I gotta feed my family. So here I am. And here you are.

Jake looks up at the inspector under his scraggly hair.

Jake: Yep.

The inspector walks over to Jake.

Inspector (quietly, to Jake): Look, you ever want to get out of here, you come talk to me. Someone with your skills could be doing better than cleaning up depraved messes.

Jake stares at the floor. The inspector lowers his head to look Jake in the eyes.

Inspector: I’m serious kid. Get out of here before this business eats you alive.

Inspector hands Jake a card. It bears the name Inspector Dave Meryl and a phone number. Jake holds his gaze. Fat man walks in. Jake stuffs the card in his pocket.

Fat man: How’s it looking, inspector? All my girls up to code?

Inspector: Yes, all your bots are beyond code. You’ve got an excellent maintenance mechanic.

Fat man: He does a fine job, but I think he’s going to eat me out of this place.

Inspector (forcefully): Aren’t 18 year old boys done growing?

Fat man (forcefully): He’s a late bloomer.

Inspector: Not everyone’s cut out to be a parent.

Fat man: That kid’s family, my sister’s kid. I’m his legal guardian.

Inspector: I’m sorry to hear that.

Inspector shoots Jake a pitying glance. Jake’s face remains hard.

Fat man: I’m happy to call your supervisor, Inspector Meryl. And don’t you dare ever try to steal my employee, let alone my family, from their job or home again.

A sleazy-looking guy walks through the door. Fat man notices him and begins quickly ushering Inspector to the door.

Fat man: I’ve got business to attend to. We’ll see you soon. (to customer) What would you like, sir?

Sleazy: How much for half an hour?

Fat man: Three thousand.

Sleazy looks dejected.

Fat man: Oh, don’t play sad. I’ve been in this business a long time. Everyone knows the prices.

Sleazy: Would… would you take two thousand for 15 minutes?

Fat man: Now, you know I can’t do that. The government’s put all sorts of regulations on me. That wouldn’t even cover my taxes and up-keep around this place.

Sleazy continues gazing at the floor and begins to leave the shop. Fat man runs to the back room.

Fat man: Jake, start up number two. Get her in the back room.

Jake: The room hasn’t been cleaned yet. The sheets are still-

Fat man: Do it.

Fat man slams the door. Jake looks at the business card in his pocket with Agent Meryl’s information. Fat man opens the door again. He looks at the card in Jake’s hand, snatches it away and rips it up.

Fat man: Try running away again. I won’t call the merc bots off so fast this time. You little puke.

Fat man leaves. Jake walks to the work bench and takes a small tazer-looking device. He takes a small pile of clothing from one end of the work bench. He walks to one of the beds and pulls the sheet back from the woman’s face. She’s a beautiful brunette. He pulls her arm from under the sheet and pushes a switch on the small device. The eyes of the woman open. She turns to look at Jake. Her name is JEANIE.

Jeanie: Hiya, Jake.

Jake: Hi, Jeanie.

Jeanie: Thanks for uncovering my face. I hate waking up and not knowing where I am.

Jake: Yep.

Jeanie sits up. Jake turns so he won’t see her without clothes. He extends his arm with the clothing to her. Jeanie laughs.

Jeanie: Jake, you’re funny. I’m just a robot.

Jake is silent.

Jeanie: Which room am I in?

Jake: Two.

Jeanie is dressed and hops from the table. She smiles.

Jeanie: Bye, Jake.

Jake follows her to the door. Fat man is ushering the sleazy man back into the shop.

Fat man (to sleazy): Don’t you go telling anybody I did this for you. You hear? One word, and I lose my license and I’m coming for you.

Sleazy (looking diabolical): Yeah, yeah.

Fat man: Alright. Room number two is all yours. Jeanie in there is gonna make your wishes come true.

Sleazy walks down the hall, laughing under his breath. Fat man sees Jake in the doorway.

Fat man: Get back to work.

Jake walks into the workroom. He uncovers the battered face of the bot who was brought in most recently. He gets a camera and takes a couple pictures of her face, then holds the tazer-like instrument up to her wrist. It beeps and displays a man’s name and picture. Jake walks over to the computer at the work station. Fat man walks in.

Fat man: Jake! What the hell are you doing?!

Fat man runs to Jake, yanks the computer cord out of the walls, then turns and back-hands Jake.

Fat man: I’m not gonna tell you again!

Fat man kicks Jake as he lies on the floor.

Fat man: We don’t send photos of abused bots to Central Policing! They can catch their own criminals. It’s no crime to abuse a bot.

Jake lays there, looking up.

Fat man: There are no heroes.

Fat man reaches on to the work bench and grabs a device that begins to emit an electric current. He lifts it to swing down at Jake when screaming breaks through the walls. Fat man runs from the work room. Jake follows.

The sleazy man is running down the hallway shirtless with his shirt in his hand. Jeanie leans out the door frame from room 2. She is still screaming. Fat man runs out of the work room, throwing down the electrified device and runs to his desk. He pulls a handgun from the drawer and holds it on Sleazy, who we see is holding Jake with a knife to his throat.

Fat man: Go on then.

Sleazy doesn’t respond. Jake is terrified.

Fat man: Kill him. Then you and I can settle this.

Sleazy: Thought you could do whatever you wanted with those bots.

Fat man: There are laws, you know.

Sleazy: You said I could do as I liked.

Fat man: Everyone knows the laws. You can get rough, but you can’t try to kill’em.

Sleazy presses the knife tighter on Jake’s throat. Jake stiffens.

Fat man: You’re gonna do it, huh? Hurry up. You’ll pay me my money, either way.

Sleazy: Here it goes, then.

From the work room, a figure appears behind Sleazy and hits him on the head. He crumples. Jake jumps away. Fat man and Jake are astonished and look up to see that it’s the bloodied bot from earlier.

Fat man: Jake! What the hell is- Where did she-

Jake and Fat man stare at the bot. She turns to look directly at Jake and remains blank-faced.

Motherbot (working title) is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.

Monday, September 20, 2010


I'm an armchair writer, akin to the armchair quarterback, and I've been taking meager stabs at "hitting the field" over the last few years. This blog will, at present, be used to participate in's Thursday Tales. I look forward to participating in a community of writers. Thanks.